Conservation DistList Archives [Date] [Subject] [Author] [SEARCH]

Subject: Rare Book School

Rare Book School

From: Terry Belanger <belanger<-a>
Date: Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Readers of the Conservation DistList may be interested in the
following courses, offered at Rare Book School at various times
during 2006:

B-10. Introduction to the History of Bookbinding
6-10 March 2006; repeated June 5-9-2006
Jan Storm van Leeuwen

    A bookbinding has two main functions. It protects its text block
    against wear and tear, and, by its structure, it makes a book
    out of a heap of otherwise separate leaves or quires. Through
    the ages, the covers, spine, fore-edge and other parts of the
    book have been decorated in almost every conceivable manner,
    technique, and material, thereby turning the binding into a work
    of decorative art. This introductory course, which will discuss
    the principal techniques and materials used in the West over
    binding's long history, is intended for those who wish to
    develop a better understanding of the history of the field; it
    is not a practical binding course. It is aimed at historians,
    special collections personnel, collectors, dealers, conservators
    and bookbinders, and others with an interest in the binding and
    its history.

    While discussing more luxurious examples, the course will also
    introduce the means for dating and localizing simpler bindings.
    Topics include: basic terminology; the relation between binding
    and contents; commissioned and signed bindings; decorated papers
    used in binding; the history of publishers' bindings (primarily)
    in the United States and England; sources that can be used for
    research; the study and description of bindings.

B-90. Publishers' Bookbindings, 1830-1910
17-21 July 2006
Sue Allen

    The perception of the importance of c19 books in library stack
    and other collections has risen dramatically in recent years,
    and a variety of steps is being taken to preserve them. The
    cover provided by the publisher is the prime compelling physical
    aspect of these books. This course is aimed at those working
    with or interested in c19 book covers. Emphasis is on American
    book covers with comparisons to English and continental styles.
    Topics include: the materials (often beautiful), technology,
    evolving styles of ornamentation, the network of practitioners,
    the description of bindings, preservation, ongoing research, and
    developing opportunities in the field.

    The c19 book cover as we look at it is a complex product of
    manufacture. It is often difficult to tell what has been done
    (was the cloth grained or stamped? how exactly was the gold put
    on?). In today's climate of heightened appreciation of these
    covers, it is important to understand how they were put
    together, to distinguish those that are more rare or more
    unusual, and to recognize which are typical of their time.

    In laboratory sessions, this course examines the processes of
    graining, stamping, and embossing so that they are clearly
    understood. The sequence of bookcloths provided by the
    manufacturer, their variety of colors and textures, the
    endpapers, the striped endbands, all the materials the binder
    brought to the book, are studied in detail, as are--decade by
    decade--the technologies and styles that changed the appearance
    of the covers. Special emphasis is given to the identification
    of "signed" bindings: when they occur and how to look for them.
    Background case histories are given of practitioners in the
    field: binder, engraver, publisher, and (at the turn of the
    century) the artist-designer. The course will make extensive use
    of Rare Book School's collection of c19 and early c20 binding

For further information on these and other RBS courses, visit

Terry Belanger
University Professor
University of Virginia
Rare Book School
PO 400103
Charlottesville VA 22904-4103
Fax: 434-924-8824

                  Conservation DistList Instance 19:23
                 Distributed: Friday, October 28, 2005
                       Message Id: cdl-19-23-015
Received on Tuesday, 25 October, 2005

[Search all CoOL documents]